Dec. 14th, 2012

My week of Hobbit madness

Aaaaaah. I KNOW, I KNOW, LATE LATE LATE. It kind of sucks that I didn't get the chance to write this all up a couple weeks ago when it was completely fresh in my mind, but between visitors and work and crazy commuting, there just hasn't been any time.

Anyway, better late than never! I'd decided a while ago that even if there was no way I could shag, bribe, threaten or otherwise cheat my way into receiving an invite to the world premiere of The Hobbit on November 28 (really, and here I thought I was famous *snort*), nor, alternatively, pay for one (tickets went for $2000 each, apparently - youch), I was still going to be in Wellington that week, come hell or high water, and soak in as much Hobbitsphere as I possibly could.

The timing worked out well since the lovely [info]alsha and I had tickets to see Avenue Q in Palmerston North that week anyway, so I just extended my stay to make sure I'd be in Welly on premiere day.

A note on picspam: Some of the photos are a little too wide for my IJ layout but this post has already taken way longer than it should and I am not resizing the damn things now, lol. If you want to see the pics properly, look at them while on the "leave a comment" screen!

Pre-premiere excitement )

Hobbit Fair, public screenings, LotR love, with a smidge of hypothermia plot )

Red carpet stalkage! (here there be picspam) )

And I think that's pretty much it! I have more pics but they're all variations on the ones I've posted here. It was a fabulous day, the atmosphere was great, everyone was lovely beyond belief, and I'm pleased as pie that we got to go, that we got such a good spot, and that everything worked out so beautifully. The city went all out for the entire week and being able to be a part of it just about made me explode with fangirly joy. Now all that's left to do is ACTUALLY WATCH THE DAMN MOVIE, which we're doing this Sunday (in 3D, because 3D means Richard Armitage will reach out of the screen and snog me, Y/Y? /science). I CAN'T WAIT.

And if you've made it through this massive post, you deserve a cookie, or at least some Lembas bread:


And Richard Armitage singing, because reasons.

Sep. 7th, 2012

Spring is here!!


Hence, have some random spring snapshots:

Wheeeeeeeeee! )

Sep. 2nd, 2012

Stuff Wot I Did On My Hols (Part 2) - A Shitload of Hiking

Last week I hiked nearly 40 km in one day. Yesssssss. It made me feel like this:


I'd been meaning to do the Dun Mountain Trail for years; alas, the friend who meant to do it with me ran off to California to get married, which seems a bit of an extreme measure just to get out of one hiking commitment, so I suppose it's possible that wasn't his sole motivation and he, y'know, actually loved the girl.

Last week I figured who knows how long it would be before I had time again, so I randomly decided to do it on my own. Excitement! First of all, the freaking thing is called Dun Mountain! Major Paths of the Dead vibes. Say what you will about Orlando, but his voice is lovely. (I crave a LotR rewatch something wicked.)

There are those who dwell in the mountain )


May. 31st, 2011

Kiwi Immigration and me, an ongoing love affair

So last week when I dropped off [info]lilithilien at the airport, we were informed that she needed that electronic visa thingie for Australia. The one that's really easy to procure but that I'd thought Canadians didn't need, so didn't bother to check. Turns out she did need it - was no problem, as you can buy it at airport. Borders are dumb, people. Can't we just do away with them? Anyway, that, combined with some research I was doing on immigration/deportation practices in the UK (with [info]amo_amas_amat coming to my rescue like a glittery research fairy <333), led me to take a quick glance in my passport to make sure I was all set to go to Europe next week.

Uhmmmmm. Not so much. I've been a permanent Kiwi resident for years, which is why I didn't bother to check anything because... why would there be problems, right? But I did vaguely remember that residency and travel conditions were somewhat connected but not identical, as I realised when I saw that my resident's visa had expired last month. And I am travelling next week. Cue massive ensuing panic. (This is all kinds of daft and unnecessary. Basically residency itself is indefinite, but you still need a visa to return to the country after travel, and the visa can expire. And if you travel on an expired visa, your residency itself can expire too. Which would obviously suck.)

This would be where I flapped about like a headless chicken trying to figure out what to do and if I could get the visa extended before I left. Luckily I was going to be in Wellington this weekend to see the lovely [info]alsha so was hoping I could throw myself at the mercy of the immigration office there. Calmed down a bit once I'd read up on things, because even if I totally failed to apply now and did travel on an expired visa, I could get stuff done retroactively once I got back, but it would be more hassle. Called the immigration helpline to confirm what I had to do in Wellington. Bloke was super-nice and helpful, told me everything I needed, including fees and all, and said I could probably even get same-day service on it if I went to the office first thing in the morning.

Even so, I spent a stupid amount fretting because immigration stuff is scary. Well, it's never been scary with the NZ authorities, at all, but I'm still conditioned to super-serious and chronically backlogged Canadian immigration. I'd been hoping I could get the visa thing done permanently (I did meet the conditions for that) so I wouldn't have to worry about extending it every few years and avoid situations like this (where I realise by pure dumb luck a week before I travel that I have no visa!). The bloke on the phone kept talking about extending it instead, which I'd have been fine with too, JUST GIMME SOME DAMN OFFICIAL THING THAT WILL LET ME BACK IN MY COUNTRY, YEAH?

Monday morning we trecked to downtown Wellington before the immigration office opened, to queue with the other usual suspects. Flash down memory lane I did not need! The office opened, I got my ticket number, we sat around waiting for five minutes. Then I got called into an officer's cubicle. He gave me a big smile and asked how he could help. I explained about the sitch, said I hoped I could get a permanent visa and I reeeaaally hoped it could get processed today. Friendly shrug. "Yep, sure, don't see why not." He looks at my application, nods, stamps, jokes around, asks if I came to Wellington just for this. Nope, I was in town anyway. "Good, cause that would have been boring." Yes, I qualify for the permanent thing, no problem. Do I have my credit card for the fee? Yes, I do. "Oh, wait." Frowny face at the computer screen. I freeze. "Oh, you don't pay. We have a fee-waiver agreement with Austria. Sweet, eh? Go treat yourself to breakfast instead." I surreptitiously look around for the REAL immigration officer. He signs my application, prints out a visa, slaps it in, beams at me. "Have a good trip, see ya." I was out of there in under ten minutes with everything DONE. No "we'll mail it to you", no processing time, not even a "pick it up tomorrow/later today."

NZ Immigration keeps doing this and I never believe it's for real. They seriously deserve some kind of international award for efficiency, speed, uncomplicatedness and mind-boggling friendliness when dealing with what the rest of the world approaches like a hostile invasion of their precious soil.


May. 25th, 2011

Ducks, Injuries, and Goodbyes

Various and sundry updatey stuff:

-Buffy, duck. -Huh?? There's a duck? )

Allein, allein! )

Undead cabbie )

Goodbye to AWZ, again )

Off to write fic and curl up with cats. Rainy winter is rainy.

Apr. 10th, 2011

Lothlorien made this look so effortless

Today we went to Adrenalin Forest. If you're wondering whether it's as insane as it looks and sounds, the answer is it's MUCH, MUCH CRAZIER.

[info]lilithilien and [info]alsha were completely awesome in agreeing to be dragged up trees and forced to climb around between them on tiny wobbly wire bridges, swinging ropes, flying foxes, moving logs or a skateboard (yes, there was one part where you moved from one tree to the next on a SKATEBOARD, lol). There are five different levels of increasing suicidal insanity difficulty and height - Lil finished Level 3 and Alsha finished Level 4 and they totally rocked it! I went on to do Level 5 as well (25 metres off the ground, bridges and modes of transport increasingly sadistic, swaying trees) and did manage to finish, although I was compleeeetely knackered by the time I came back down.

V. disappointed that we didn't all get certificates of awesomeness out of this, because we so deserved them, lol.

Dear body: I apologise for the things I put you through today. Lots of couchtime and wine in your immediate future, kk?

Oct. 31st, 2010

Cheerfully going bonkers as usual

I am so way overdue an update and as usual I fail at structure, so I'm going to nab [info]giorgiakerr's basic number format, kk? EVERYONE LOVES NUMBERS.

1. My mini-hiatus thing is over. It was spurred by a completely mad burst of creativity that had me doing nothing but, uh, well, creative stuff for a good two weeks and I couldn't be arsed to have a social life even online. Obsessive Aldi is obsessive. Anyway, I've finished a mural, I've cranked out a short piece of writing, and most importantly, in a bizarre development utterly at odds with all things to do with me and time management, I've finished my HoHoHo Fest assignment early. I KNOW. On the more normal side of things, it needs massive amounts of editing, and since I loathe editing with the fiery power of a thousand suns, I'll probably still find myself the night before the deadline going "OH SHIT OH SHIT I HAVE NOT FIXED ANYTHING AND NOW THERE'S NOT ENOUGH TIME OH SHIT", so all will be as usual, I expect. BUT YES, YES, IT IS STRANGE AND UNSETTLING, I DO NOT GET THINGS DONE ON TIME, WTF. But I am just the tiniest bit chuffed about it. And I hope my giftee (??? is that the proper term for person receiving gift?) will like it. WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

2. Summer is here YAYAYAYYAY. I walked all the way to town today (it's about 40 minutes along the bike path, which is an elevated lovely hike through the hills with lots of trees and meadows and yes, sheep) listening to music in the sun and then lazed around on the green near the cathedral and it was glorious. I LOVE SUMMER.

3. One of the rose bushes that I planted about two years ago in the mad and over-optimistic notion that I might actually, you know, take care of them and that I then promptly left to wither and die, has suddenly decided to burst into bloom. The other one would usually come out with maybe... one tiny wee rose a year and I'd be all "o_O LOOK LOOK IT'S A FLOWER! AM MADLY TALENTED NURTURING EARTH MOTHER!" and this one literally hasn't done anything since I planted it other than sit there looking bare and sullen. Over the past months, it's randomly started growing like mad until it reached a freakish height, and right now it's ALL OVER roses as big as both of my hands together. They are dark red velvety and stunningly gorgeous and stunningly fragrant and I'd take a picture if the only camera we currently owned wasn't the one that Alsha's parents sent her for her birthday except then it took three months to arrive and by the time it *did* arrive she was in England so now I think it'd be tacky to play with her present before she gets back and can play with it herself, so there's no picture, just take my word for it, MY ROSES ARE GORGEOUS AND THIS IS EXCITING, OKAY. (wow, that was a tangenty sentence.)

4. Speaking of [info]alsha, yes, she is still gone and appears to be having a whale of a time (bizarre expression, surely). I miiiiiiiiiss her <333333

5. I need to watch my tendency to stick "<333333333333333333"s onto absolutely everything I say, lest it lose its significance, don'tcha know.

6. I am currently only sliiiightly inebriated but plan to be more so later, as I have pretty much been living on a diet of cider and strawberries. Wheeeeeeeee!

7. Was worried about having no work for a while, but I think/hope it's getting back to normal? I think I may have mentioned a time or fifty how vexing the flip-flop between "ARGH DYING UNDER MOUNTAINS OF WORK, CANNOT COPE" and "ARGH, WILL NEVER EVER GET WORK AGAIN AS LONG AS LIVE & PETS WILL STARVE & HOUSE WILL NEED TO BE SOLD & WILL NEED TO LIVE UNDER BRIDGE EXCEPT CANNOT ACTUALLY REMEMBER WHERE NEAREST BRIDGE IS" states of freelance employment is. Why does one not get paid for managing very hard task of, IDK, existing? Bah.

8. Birthday was fabulous explosion of love, including the sparkliest of greetings from Cologne (some of them complete with horrible fake Austrian accents, lololol <333333333333333333333). *squishes marvellous friends*

9. Still in cranky state of disenchantment with Show; on the upside, though, fiercely in love with fabulous canon-fixing fandom *cuddles it*


11. I have a sick craving for watching the Dawson's Creek finale *cackles madly* SHUP, IT TOTALLY MAKES ME CRY.


13. I thiiiiiiink I am caught up with everything I meant to get caught up on IJ and neeeaaarly there on LJ. If there is something that will crumple and die unless it is validated by a comment from me, please yell at me and point me at it!

14. *squishes f-list*

Sep. 3rd, 2010

Free time? OMG what's that??

Exciting times. We're taking an EKP break. I'm not sure I know how to do that! EKP rambling )

LotR rambling (with picspam to prove Sean Bean and Timo Hübsch are long-lost brothers) )

Fingersmith rambling (with trailerspam) )

And of course, hair talk! )

Right. Off to explore the [info]bbtp_challenge masterlist some more, scowl at my work, and oil my very rusty original-material writing skills.

*squishes the lovely f-list*

Aug. 9th, 2009

Winter, What Winter?, Telly-Watching, & the Latest from Cracky Sparkly Obsession Land

*pokes in head, does perfunctory cleaning, feeds the starved dustbunnies*

I biked to town today! I thought it might just about kill me, but actually it was really fun, and I did not even crumble before the Hill of Hell (living in a town that's all built on hills is very pretty until you have to manouevre them on a bike). We'll see if my thighs will turn to knotted wood overnight, but I was pleasantly surprised.

This winter has been insanely mild. Like... it's laughable to even call it winter. We don't get snow, but last year it was pretty cold and we had that killer storm that sent like 500 trees flying through the air and smashing into things. This year has mostly been sunny and slightly cool, lol. It's hardly ever rained. It hasn't stormed. The temperature's rarely even dropped to zero. And now it's not even mid-August but it's been so warm and spring-like that I was hot in my long-sleeved shirt (no jacket) today. Crazyskates! Not that I'm complaining. Grandma asks if we don't miss the snow everytime we talk, and I can still respond with an emphatic "NO!", lol.

Otherwise, not much new is going on. I'm still busy bending the time/space continuum, getting by on 10 hours of sleep a week, and being a busy little bee on EKP and the awesomesauce that is AWZ lately. The lovely [info]alsha and I are watching One Tree Hill, which I am notable unimpressed with so far, and she's recently got me hooked on Sugar Rush, which is just all sorts of adorable and hilarious, with just the right amount of snark. Plus, lots of lovely girlslash! What's not to love?

Being so wrapped up in my cracky German soap and watching lots of British shows lately has really kind of put me off mainstream American shows, I think, lol. We started watching One Tree Hill because we both quite like cheesy teenage shows to veg with (witness my terrible cheerful love for Dawson's Creek) but ugh... everything so far has been so ham-fisted and anvil-dropping and eyerollingly moralising and glossy and wooden. Pls to be giving me some characters that are actual people instead of walking stereotypes. And some good writing would help, too.

Anyway, life's pretty good. Could do with less job and more money, a clone or seven, and more hours in my day, as usual, but in general, can't complain.

Bunch of fandom stuff behind cut to spare the non-obsessed )

And now... I have ice cream, gummis and, uhm, work. Rats. Why must one work, why, why? I wish to spend all my time doing shiny things! *pouty*

As ever, I do read the f-list even if I don't post much lately. Love you all! Hope you're having great weekends! *smooches*

Apr. 19th, 2009


Wow, what is this place? It looks vaguely familiar. It has like, icons and stuff! Curious. *pokes*

Well, I am caught up with my f-list. Kinda. Maybe. My inbox is a different matter entirely. EMAILS? WHAT ARE THOSE? And if work ever remembers that I exist, I'm in trouble, lol. WHERE IS MY RICH AUNT WHO WANTS TO BEQUEATHE HER SUBSTANTIAL FORTUNE TO ME, WHERE, WHERE?

It's getting into autumn here, but like last year it's mostly warm and the leaves are just starting to turn and be all gorgeous. Some hiking definitely needs to happen this autumn, preferably when the lovely [info]feruche comes to visit in less than a month! Squeeeeeeeee! I CAN'T WAIT. Last weekend [info]alsha and i went on a wee roadtrip to have a picnic/frisbee-playing/reading afternoon out in the hills. It was unfortunately cut short by interfering gnats, but fun anyway! I keep taking it for granted what an awesome place I live in.

Then last night we went out and discovered a super-cute pub that we definitely need to frequent more. Their berry cider was out of this world, and we played pink scrabble. Much fun was had!

I was reminded the other day that HBP is coming out soon. Dude. That movie has slipped so far to the back of my mind. I mean, I'm still gonna go see it, but I'm not anywhere near as excited as I would have been back in November. I maintain that moving it back that far was an epically stupid decision.

In fandom news, MY LIFE IS MADNESS.

*puts behind cut to spare poor f-list that has had it up to here with hearing about German soaps* )

That's it for now, I think. Apologies for being sporadic and/or one-track-minded. One of these years I'll talk about something else, I'm sure. SURE OF IT.

I hope everyone's having a great weekend! *smooches f-list*

Apr. 2nd, 2009

Immigration squee!

I just got the news that my application for my NZ residence permit has been approved!! It's been almost a year since I applied, and not that I was really worried or anything, but it's great to finally have that sorted.


Jan. 4th, 2009

Mhmmm, summer

Yesterday, [info]alsha and I took a lovely roadtrip up the winding coast road, with fish & chips and some time in a lovely little cafe in the town of Havelock, which I never can help calling Hemlock in my head.

Then spent the rest of the afternoon under shady trees by the ocean, looking out across turquoise waters whilst editing porn. I do love living here.

[info]twilightdweller and [info]flyingburrito1 get here in two days (*bounce bounce bounce*) and the house elves still haven't cleaned the house!! I think I need to give them a good whipping.

January 2020




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